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Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Balsamic, Walnuts & Pomegranate

These maple-roasted brussel sprouts with balsamic are possibly the best version of a brussel sprout you’ll ever taste. Ready in just 30 minutes and served here with toasted walnuts, crumbled feta, a splash of juicy pomegranates, and a sprinkle of fresh parsley, these balsamic brussel sprouts are crispy, easy, and a delicious vegetable side dish I think you’ll love.

a serving plate piled with balsamic roasted Brussel sprouts topped with chopped walnuts, crumbled feta, and pomegranate seeds as well as a scattering of chopped parsley. The dish is on a light brown waffle patterned cloth

I’ve been publishing a series of vegetable side dishes that are a must for Christmas dinner but honestly…they’re great all year round. Similar recipes you’ll love include these honey garlic roasted carrots, perfect roast potatoes, crispy roasted green beans, and this super indulgent cauliflower cheese.

I truly believe that anyone who says they don’t like brussel sprouts just hasn’t had them cooked the right way. Like any vegetable, a boiled brussel sprout with no love, care, or seasoning(!) isn’t going to taste amazing.

However, when you roast the humble brussel sprout in balsamic vinegar and maple syrup until it’s caramelized and crispy, and then pair it with crunchy toasted walnuts, creamy feta, and a little burst of sweetness from the pomegranates…heaven.

A close up shot of a fork with a balsamic sprout, chopped walnut, pomegranate, feta and parsley on it. The serving plate of balsamic sprouts can be seen in the background

Ingredient Notes and What You’ll Need

This is a fairly fuss-free recipe, which always gets bonus points in my house. In terms of equipment, you’ll need a large baking tray (you want to ensure your sprouts have lots of room!), a knife and chopping board, a serving dish, and a saucepan for toasting your walnuts. Alternatively, you could also lay the walnuts across a second baking tray to toast them for 5 minutes.

Here are a few notes on the ingredients used in this recipe – make sure you scroll down to the recipe card for the exact quantities and step-by-step instructions.

  • Brussel sprouts: The main star of this dish. Make sure you’ve thoroughly washed your sprouts and peeled off any brown or inedible-looking leaves before halving them (halve along the root/stem of the sprout so all those lovely layers stay together).
  • Maple syrup: You could also use honey for this recipe instead of maple syrup, but I think the flavor of the maple syrup pairs absolutely perfectly with the tangy balsamic vinegar.
  • Balsamic vinegar: Tossing your roasted sprouts in balsamic vinegar before roasting for a further 10 minutes until they’re slightly caramelized and beautifully crispy is what takes a brussel sprout from good to insanely delicious.
  • Olive oil: We combine the maple syrup with oil in order to roast the sprouts. If you prefer, you could also use vegetable oil, rapeseed oil, or canola oil.
  • Salt & pepper: Seasonings are kept very simple in this recipe to allow the balsamic and maple syrup to do their thing.
  • Walnuts: The warmth and crunch of nutty toasted walnuts add a great balance to the balsamic brussel sprouts in this dish. Chop your nuts and toast them for 5 minutes or until they just begin to smell ‘nutty’ – but before they begin to darken too much in color.
  • Feta cheese: I love the contrast crumbled feta adds to this recipe. If you’re serving it as a vegetable side dish alongside others, the feta makes this dish look and taste beautiful.
  • Pomegranates: Juicy pomegranate seeds add a lovely flash of color and sweetness to this dish. I would urge you not to omit this component!
  • Parsley: Finally, your brussel sprouts with balsamic are finished with a scatter of freshly chopped parsley.

Substitutions & Adaptations You Could Make To This Recipe

Can’t or won’t eat something listed above? Or not sure you can source a certain ingredient? Here are a few substitutions that should still work great for your roasted brussel sprouts…

  • If you can’t have feta cheese, you could use goat’s cheese instead. You might also want to omit the feta if you plan on adding gravy over your sprouts.
  • Other cheese options include using Pecorino or Parmesan (not suitable for vegetarians), or Gorgonzola.
  • If you can’t have nuts, omit them or add in some sunflower seeds as a potential adaptation.
  • If you can’t have walnuts specifically, other nuts that work a treat with this dish are roasted chestnuts and pecans.
  • If you can’t find pomegranates, other options for that added sweetness are cranberries.
  • Instead of maple syrup, you could use honey in the same way.
  • Another potential adaptation to this recipe that some of you may like is to add crispy bacon pieces – I’ve used the vegan bacon pieces in mine before and they add a great texture and taste to this dish.


Storing Your Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Balsamic Vinegar

A close up shot of the serving plate piled with balsamic roasted Brussel sprouts topped with chopped walnuts, crumbled feta, and pomegranate seeds as well as a scattering of chopped parsley. The dish is on a light brown waffle patterned cloth

Once all the elements of this dish are combined, the brussel sprouts are best served and enjoyed immediately. 

If you have any leftovers, save them as a cold salad for the next day. The pomegranates, parsley, and feta will not taste the same if reheated so I wouldn’t advise batch-cooking this recipe.

If you want to make your sprouts ahead of time, I would recommend preparing your brussel sprouts up to the step (listed below) where you roast them in the balsamic vinegar, and then wait to assemble the dish fully until you are ready to eat.

How To Make Roasted Brussel Sprouts in Balsamic Vinegar with Walnuts, Pomegranate, and Feta Cheese

Again, the exact step-by-step instructions and ingredients are listed in the recipe card after the FAQs below, but here are the basic step along with some photos to help you see the dish come together.

Step 1: Prepare Your Brussel Sprouts

Wash and peel your brussel sprouts, and then cut each one in half at the root. Add them to a baking tray.

a wooden chopping board on a white surface. The chopping board is scattered with halved brussel sprouts. In the top right corner, there is also a colander with more washed and chopped sprouts
1) wash and chop the sprouts

Step 2: Drizzle with the maple syrup and olive oil and roast for 20 minutes.

I mixed the combination of maple syrup and olive oil together before drizzling them over the brussel sprouts and adding salt and pepper. Use clean hands to make sure every sprout is evenly coated, and then lie each sprout with the cut-side facing down. 

Make sure you leave space between each sprout to enable each one to get beautifully crispy in the oven!

Step 3: Drizzle the sprouts with balsamic vinegar

After 20 minutes, remove your sprouts from the oven and drizzle over the balsamic vinegar. Use a spatula to gently flip the sprouts to evenly coat them, and then return your tray to the oven to roast for another 10 minutes. Don’t worry if they start to darken – this will be the balsamic vinegar cooking and beginning to caramelize the brussel sprouts, not them burning.

Step 4: Toast your walnuts

While the sprouts are roasting, toast your chopped walnuts in a clean (oil-free) saucepan for 4-5 minutes until they are just beginning to smell ‘nutty’. If they have all darkened in color, you have likely toasted them for too long!

Step 4: Assemble the dish

Place your balsamic brussel sprouts on a dish, and then top them with the toasted walnuts, crumbled feta, pomegranates, and fresh parsley.

serving plate with roasted balsamic sprouts, walnuts, feta and pomegranates

FAQs

How do I prepare the pomegranate seeds for this recipe?

I’ll be honest: I cheat and buy the readymade pomegranate seeds to avoid having to deal with a whole pomegranate. It’s easier, and they’re so delicious that I end up snacking on the leftovers as I cook! You could definitely buy a whole pomegranate and prepare the seeds yourself though.

How do I toast my chopped walnuts?

Chopped nuts are best toasted in a clean and dry saucepan – meaning, you don’t need any oil. Simply tip the chopped walnuts into your pan and place over a medium heat. After around 4 minutes, they should begin to smell ‘nutty’ and fragrant and may darken ever so slightly in color. This means they’re done. Don’t cook them for so long that the walnuts turn a dark brown, as they’ll taste bitter and burnt.

My brussel sprouts look very dark and black in some places – have I burned them?

If you’ve followed the steps below, then it’s very likely that it’s simply the balsamic vinegar cooking and darkening the sprouts, rather than you burning them. The best way to find out is to taste them, you’ll soon know!

Roased Brussel Sprouts with Balsamic

Roased Brussel Sprouts with Balsamic

Yield: 4-5 portions
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

You’ll love these easy roasted brussel sprouts in balsamic vinegar and maple syrup, served with toasted walnuts, crumbled feta, and juicy pomegranate seeds. This delicious vegetable side dish is ready in just 30 minutes and is absolutely bursting with flavor.

Ingredients

  • 320g Brussel sprouts
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 20g chopped walnuts
  • 30g feta
  • 20g pomegranate seeds
  • 1 handful of fresh parsley

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 200C and line a large baking tray with baking paper. 
  2. Mix together the maple syrup and olive oil in a small bowl.
  3. Wash and peel your brussel sprouts, and then halve each one along the root.
  4. Tip your brussel sprouts onto your baking tray and then drizzle them with the maple syrup and oil mixture, salt, and pepper. Use clean hands or tongs to ensure each sprout is evenly coated.
  5. Lie each brussel sprout with the cut-side facing down on the baking tray, and leave a little space around each one. Ensure they don’t overlap and that your baking tray is not too crowded.
  6. Roast the brussel sprouts for 20 minutes. They should be just turning golden and crispy when you remove them from the oven.
  7. Remove the sprouts from the oven, and drizzle them with the balsamic. Use tongs to flip the sprouts and coat them in the balsamic vinegar.
  8. Roast your sprouts for another 10 minutes. They will darken in color and go crispy - don’t worry, this is the balsamic vinegar cooking and should not be the sprouts burning.
  9. Meanwhile, place your chopped nuts in a saucepan and toast over medium heat for 4-5 minutes until golden and fragrant.
  10. Remove the sprouts from the oven and arrange on your serving dish with the toasted walnuts, crumbled feta, pomegranate seeds, and chopped parsley.

Notes

These balsamic brussel sprouts are best served immediately - if you have leftovers, enjoy them as a cold salad the next day.

The balsamic vinegar will darken the brussel sprouts as they cook. If you cook them for the 30 minutes suggested overall, they shouldn’t taste burnt - just crispy and delicious!

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